The Candidates: Tim Lappano

Minutes after the news of Dennis Erickson taking the head coaching job at San Francisco, speculation about Erickson's successor filled the airwaves, message boards, and the conversations of Beaver fans around the country. According to OSU athletic director, Bob DeCarolis, several highly qualified, high-profile coaches have inquired about the vacant head coaching position.

"We're not opening or shutting the door on anybody," DeCarolis said. "It's important to find someone with west coast ties, it's not a campaign, you got to show that you've got a plan."

With that said, the 'plan' to find the 28th coach in Oregon State football history has begun.

One coach within the Beaver organization has expressed a deep interest in the head coaching position, offensive coordinator, Tim Lappano.

Lappano lobbied heavily for the coaching position at Tuesday's Portland Beaver luncheon. The Beaver fans on hand responded with thunderous applause.

The Idaho Vandal alumni came to Oregon State after Erickson was hired in 1999.

Lappano grew up in the Northwest and is a great recruiter.

The offensive coordinator got his collegiate coaching career started in 1982 under Dennis Erickson at the University of Idaho. During his three year tenure at Idaho, the Vandals won the Big Sky championship in 1985. Lappano was also responsible for recruiting John Friesz, who would later be a quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks.

After the 1985 season, Erickson was hired by the University of Wyoming in 1986. Lappano joined Erickson in Wyoming as the running backs coach.

Erickson was then lured away from Wyoming by Washington State in 1987. Lappano moved with Erickson to Pullman where he spent four years. While under Erickson, Lappano coached the 1989 Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year and number one 1990 NFL draft pick, Steve Broussard.

Lappano also helped the #16 Cougars capture a 24-22 victory over the University of Houston in the 1988 Aloha Bowl. The Cougars first bowl game since 1981.

In 1991, Erickson departed from the frigid Pullman weather to the warm weather of Miami. Lappano stayed in Pullman under head coach Mike Price.

Lappano was promoted by Price to offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach after Erickson's departure. As the WSU offensive coordinator, the Cougars led the Pac-10 in passing offense and was tenth in the nation. The offensive coordinator was also responsible for recruiting All-American DeWayne Patterson and coaching outstanding players such as Drew Bledsoe, Shaumbe Wright-Fair, and Keith Reynolds.

After five years in Pullman, Lappano moved the University of California where he served as the assistant head coach and running backs coach under Keith Gilbertson. During Lappano's time in Berkeley, the Golden Bears defeated Iowa 37-3 in the 1993 Alamo Bowl.

The well traveled coach continued his success in recruiting and coaching great players at Cal. Lappano coach Heisman candidate Russell White, in addition to Lindsey Champman, Bobby Shaw, Deltha O'Neill, and Tyrone Edwards.

Lappano rejoined the University of Wyoming in 1996 as the receivers coach under Joe Tiller. The Cowboys won the WAC title, finished 10-2, and led the WAC in total offense. While on his short stint at Wyoming, he coached All-American and Fred Biletnikoff Award winning wide receiver Marcus Harris.

Following his year at Wyoming, Lappano moved to Purdue with Joe Tiller. Purdue finished the season ranked 15th in the nation, won the Alamo Bowl, and a 9-4 record.

The recruiting expert showed again that he could recruit the best talent in the country after Texas superstars Drew Brees and Montrell Lowe signed with Purdue.

Lappano made his first NFL appearance in 1998 under Erickson, who gave Lappano his first professional coaching job at Idaho. During his one year tenure with the Seahawks he coached the Seahawk's Offensive Player of the Year Ricky Watters.

Tim moved with Erickson to Oregon State in 1999 and is now applying for the head coaching postion at Oregon State University in 2003. comment: Lappano will probably leave the Oregon State organization if he does not get the head coaching position.


Tomorrow...a profile of former Beaver coach and current New Oreleans assistant head coach Mike Riley.


Assistant head coach and offensive line coach Gregg Smith and secondary coach Al Simmons will join Erickson in San has also been confirmed that Dan Cozzetto, was named the offensive line coach at Washington...Norm Chow has been contacted and said he is not interested in the OSU head coaching job.

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